Seattle is the gateway to the scenic northwest


Nice switchback on 410 Chinook Pass Scenic Byway southeast of Seattle near Mt Rainier
Nice switchback on 410 Chinook Pass Scenic Byway southeast of Seattle near Mt Rainier

 

Here's a  300 mile loop from Seattle, including this switchback on Chinook Pass Scenic Byway. The Yakima River Canyon, Hwy 821 from Ellensburg to Yakima is also highly recommended. See larger map with directions.

314 mile loop with switchback at Chinook Pass (G). Click the link above for the directions.
314 mile loop with switchback at Chinook Pass (G). Click the link above for the directions.

 

Seattle is another fly and ride choice, with the Seattle airport 4 miles from EagleRider in Burien and 7 miles from Lawless HD of Renton. This route heads west on Hwy 410, close to Mt. Rainier, near point (G) on the map.

 

You may enjoy Ginkgo Petrified Forest State Park east of Ellensburg.

 

"Ginkgo Petrified Forest State Park is a 7,470-acre park with year-round camping at Wanapum Recreational Area. The park features 27,000-feet of freshwater shoreline on the Wanapum Reservoir on the Columbia River. Petrified wood was discovered in the region in the early 1930s, which led to creation of the park as a national historic preserve. Ginkgo Petrified Forest is a registered national natural landmark. It is regarded as one of the most unusual fossil forests in the world." 

http://www.parks.wa.gov/288/Ginkgo-Petrified-Forest

 


307 mile loop around Mt Rainier
307 mile loop around Mt Rainier

This day trip takes you east on Hwy 410 near Mt Rainier. Section (E) to (F) takes you 31 miles each way to the Henry M Jackson Visitor Center in Mt Rainier National Park. There's a curvy section near the top. See larger map with directions.

 

The south leg takes you over White Pass on US Hwy 12, another scenic byway in Washington state.

 

You can also enter Mr Rainier NP from the east. See larger map with directions. Hwy 123 connects Hwy 410 and US 12. Stevens Canyon Rd (closed winters) takes you the 21 miles west to the Henry M. Jackson Visitor Center

 

Mt Ranier panorama - Wikipedia photo
Mt Ranier panorama - Wikipedia photo


Mount Rainier National Park


 

Mount Rainier National Park is open all year. Visitation is at its peak in July and August, when the weather is warm and dry and the wildflowers are blooming. Parking is limited in many areas of the park especially on busy summer weekends and holidays. If you are planning a summer trip to Mount Rainier, consider visiting mid-week, which is generally less crowded.

In spring, with ephemeral waterfalls and in autumn, with brilliant colors reaching deep into the valleys, visitors can enjoy a more leisurely vacation in the park. During these seasons, weather may determine the availability of facilities in certain areas of the park. Before making any plans check the current status of roads, campgrounds, trails and activities.

Vehicle access to Mount Rainier in the winter is only available from the Nisqually Entrance, in the southwest corner of the park on the way to Paradise. The Carbon River Entrance is open but the road within the park boundary is limited to foot and bicycle traffic. Check the road status prior to coming to the park as road conditions are subject to change.

 
 


Mt Ranier Scenic RR - Wikipedia photo
Mt Ranier Scenic RR - Wikipedia photo

Mount Ranier Scenic Railroad

 

"The Mt. Rainier Scenic Railroad (MRSR) is a steam-powered heritage railroad operating in Washington State between Elbe and Mineral. The railroad travels on tracks that pass through thick forest just south of Mount Rainier. The depot, gift shop and ticket office are located in Elbe. The Mineral stop is on the shore of Mineral Lake, close to picnic grounds, trails, and the railroad's maintenance shops. The MRSR, a501(c)(3) non-profit organization, runs its collection of vintage rail equipment over seven miles of track owned by Tacoma Rail, an entity distinct from the MRSR."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Rainier_Scenic_Railroad

 


Seattle skyline - Wikipedia photo
Seattle skyline - Wikipedia photo

 

"With an estimated 634,535 residents as of 2012, Seattle is the largest city in the Pacific Northwest region of North America and one of the fastest-growing cities in the United States.[5] The Seattle metropolitan area of around 3.5 million inhabitants is the 15th largest metropolitan area in the United States.[6] The city is situated on a narrow isthmus between Puget Sound (an inlet of the Pacific Ocean) and Lake Washington, about 100 miles (160 km) south of the Canada–United States border. A major gateway for trade with Asia, Seattle is the 8th largest port in the United States and 9th largest in North America in terms of container handling.[7]"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seattle

 

GoNorthwest.com has lots of Seattle area info.

 

 

Vintage Motorcycle Festival in Tacoma, WA
Vintage Motorcycle Festival in Tacoma, WA

The LeMay Car Museum  in Tacoma also hosts the Vintage Motorcycle Festival in August.


See their photos.

 


Hwy 101 surrounds Olympic NP
Hwy 101 surrounds Olympic NP

Olympic National Park - Kalaloch campground on Hwy 101

 

"For thousands of marine species, these coastal waters are a safe haven. The marine environment and offshore islands are protected by three national wildlife refuges andOlympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary. The refuges manage the islands visible above high tide waters for 135 miles along the coast. Large nesting colonies ofbirds like common murres and tufted puffins need these rocky outposts.

Kalaloch is one of the most visited areas of Olympic National Park. Kalaloch and Ruby Beach are located on the southwest coast of the Olympic Peninsula. They are accessible directly off of Highway 101.

Places to Stay:
Campgrounds at Kalaloch and South Beach are the only places to camp on the southern coast of Olympic National Park. Kalaloch is open year-round, and has 175 campsites, four of which are wheelchair accessible. Make sure to reserve a site as early on in the year as possible, as they fill up quickly and most are booked throughout the summer. South Beach, just south of Kalaloch, has about 50 campsites and is open Memorial Day - late September.

Kalaloch Lodge, right on the beach, has rooms and cabins available upon reservation."  See map point (C) below.

http://www.nps.gov/olym/planyourvisit/visiting-kalaloch-and-ruby-beach.htm

US Hwy 101 - Olympic National Park
US Hwy 101 - Olympic National Park

This 317 mile loop circles the Olympic Peninsula. See larger map with directions.